skip to main content

UK and Japan agree future fighter engine development

A screenshot from a video released on 22 December to mark the agreement between the UK and Japan to develop future engine technologies. (Team Tempest)

The United Kingdom and Japan have agreed to the joint development of engine technology for the both the Tempest and F-X future combat aircraft programmes.

Announced by the UK government on 22 December, the agreement covers joint work on a jet engine demonstrator for the UK-led Tempest, which is being developed under the Future Combat Air System (FCAS) programme, and the Japanese F-X (unofficially referred to as the F3) programme.

“Work on the joint engine demonstrator will kickstart early next year, with the UK investing an initial GBP30 million [USD40 million] in planning, digital designs and innovative manufacturing developments,” the UK government said. “A further GBP200 million of UK funding is expected to go towards developing a full-scale demonstrator power system, supporting hundreds of highly skilled jobs, including many at Rolls-Royce's Filton facility in Bristol”. The Japanese government had not disclosed its level of funding at the time of writing.

News of the bilateral agreement came some six months after the two countries pledged in July to accelerate talks on the joint development of aero-engine technologies in support of the two countries' respective next-generation fighter aircraft programmes. Both the Tempest and F-X have similar timelines for research, development, and production, with both platforms slated to enter operational service from the mid-2030s. With Rolls-Royce leading the engine demonstrator effort for the UK, the Japanese lead will be taken by IHI Corporation.

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...